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Second study on valsartan is threatened with retraction over alleged data manipulation

BMJ 2013; 347 doi: (Published 05 August 2013) Cite this as: BMJ 2013;347:f4920
  1. Chris Mahony
  1. 1London

A second major study linking the antihypertensive drug valsartan to a reduced incidence of angina and stroke in high risk patients has come under scrutiny amid claims of data manipulation and undeclared conflicts of interests.

Industry website Pharmaceutical Processing said that a committee commissioned by Tokyo’s Jikei University School of Medicine reported on 30 July that the Jikei Heart Study on the Novartis drug Diovan, was “basically defective and lacks credibility.”1 The study was published in the Lancet in 2007.2 Diovan has been a major earner for Novartis.

The criticisms come just four months after the European Heart Journal retracted a 2009 paper reporting the Kyoto Heart Study, also based on Japanese research.3 In March the European Cardiology Society, which publishes the journal, referred to “critical problems” …

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